Entering the Mail Room I heard Anya say, “I’m over here Santa,” over the buzz of the elves translating letters from children.
Turning to my right, I saw her waving as she walked to her desk. I headed over to her and gave her a hug. As we embraced, I felt a tap on my shoulder. Spinning around to see who it was, Carter, the elf who helps Ms. Claus in the Mail Room, stood there with a stack of letters, “Santa, these are the letters from people who want you to visit before Christmas.”
“That looks like a bigger stack than last year, Carter.”
“It is and I think you may have some tough choices to make.”
“Well let’s take the letters down to my office and get started then.”
Entering my office Carter took a seat at the small conference table in the corner, and I walked behind my desk. Shuffling some papers around, I found the leather-bound appointment book and headed toward the table and sat across from Carter.
“These two letters need our immediate attention.” Sliding the letters in front of Santa, Carter explained, “These two places would like you to come early so that the parents can get good pictures of their children with you.”
“These are for November. I don’t usually start visiting until after Thanksgiving.”
“I thought that was strange as well. But apparently many people are sending Christmas cards with family pictures on them now. The parents have been asking about getting pictures early so they don’t have to rush during December.”
“I see this one is from the parent’s organization of a school in Burlington, which makes sense, since they help the school, but what is this Venture Crew from Union?”
“It’s a Boy Scout program, and it helps young adults between the ages of 14 and 20. The purpose of Venturing is to provide positive experiences that enable young people to become responsible adults. And the best part is that, it is open to both boys and girls!”
“Well let’s help them out then. It should be easy to find dates for them in November.”
“Consider it done Santa.”
“Who is next on the list?”
“The Holiday Junction at the Cincinnati Museum Center has requested some extra time from you this year.”
“I’ve always visited their Holiday Junction three days a week, and then one of my Jolly Assistants To Santa Corps (J.A.T.S.) members covered the other days. What are they requesting?”
“They were hoping that you would consider doing a fourth day, and they would like you to continue doing the Storytelling on Mondays.”
“If it is a weekday, I think we could do that. Most requests seem to be for the weekends.”
“Well they were also hoping that you could arrive on the Friday after Thanksgiving.”
“Has anyone else requested that day,” I asked.
“As of now, this is the only one. I think it might be fun for you.” Carter said. Acting a bit nervous he added, “They are also requesting Ms. Claus for the arrival.”
“That should not be an issue, but you sound a bit concerned.”
“I’m not sure how either of you feel about flying.”
“Ms. Claus and I fly all the time in our sleighs. You’re not making any sense,” I stated, a little confused.
“They want you to arrive in a helicopter.”
“I see,” I responded as I stroked my beard. “I’m fine with that, and I’m sure Ms. Claus will be as well. After all, it is for the children. I’ll talk with her later about it. What about the Kindervelt visits that benefit Children’s Hospital?”
“That is still on, but the dates have changed a little bit because of how late Thanksgiving is this year. I penciled in December 13th and 14th for them, if it works for you.”
Looking at my book I replied, “Those dates are good. Are the rest of the letters requests for home visits?”
“Yes, and once again, we have more requests than you could possibly do. We will need to coordinate with our J.A.T.S. Corps. Birdie, the elf who helps coordinate all your helpers, should be in on our conversations.”
“I agree. We will need many of them to help out this Christmas Season.”
“Birdie and I have been working the last couple weeks getting the list all up to date, and he is visiting with some of them today. Would you have time to talk with him tomorrow?”
“I will make the time. If I can’t get to all the homes, then It’s important that a J.A.T.S. Corps member gets to them. How about meeting with Birdie in the morning after breakfast?”
“Sounds good. I will finalize all the visits we talked about today.” Gathering up all the letters Carter said, “See you in the morning.”
As Carter walked out the door, Anya came in and asked, “You didn’t go through all the letters already did you?”
“No. We need Birdie to coordinate the visits with the J.A.T.S. Corps. But we did get some visits worked out, and I need to talk about one with you.” Pointing to the couch in my office, I continued, “Have a seat.”
After Anya settled down on the couch, I sat next to her and told her, “The Cincinnati Museum Center would like you to arrive with me on the Friday after Thanksgiving.”
“We usually do not do anything on that day, so yes, I’d love to do that with you!”
“There is a condition.”
“What are you talking about Santa?”
“Well they would like us to arrive in a helicopter,” I said awkwardly, fearing Anya would not like it.
“Well, I don’t see why that should be an issue. After all, we fly around all the time in a sleigh with reindeer. I think it will be fun,” she answered giving me a hug.
“I’m glad you agree!” Grabbing her hand, and kissing the back of it, I continued, “That’s one of the many reasons I love you, you’re always up for an adventure. It will be a great way to begin the Christmas Season!”
To learn more about the J.A.T.S. Corps please check out “Santa’s Summer Explorations”, which was posted on August 5, 2019
To learn more about the Mail Room please check out “Translating Letters For Santa”, which was posted on August 19, 2019
For more information about Cincy Santa’s Fundraiser for your organization please visit Santa In Toyland
Learn more about Cincinnati Museum Center’s Holiday Junction
Learn more about Children’s Hospital’s Kindervelt
I hope you enjoyed today’s story. I will post another one next Monday. If you have any comments or if there is something you would like me to tell you about, please feel free to leave me a comment. Until next week . . .
Illustration by FireMane Studio